(SurvivalDaily.com) – When it comes to prepping, one of the biggest things to consider is defense. There seems to be a collective mentality among many preppers that violence is going to happen, and it’s certainly a strong possibility. What if there were a way to avoid it though? Avoiding a conflict is just as good as winning one. Now, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still be prepared to do whatever it takes to survive, but it does hold some bearing.
After things go south, you’re likely going to come into contact with a variety of people. Early on, looters will be a big problem, especially when there is no rule of law. These people will be looking for places that may have supplies they can steal. If you have a large enough force with you, you’re probably safe from looting in the beginning. As time goes on, however, those same looters may come back with a bigger group, and more practice.
It may be in your best interest to blend your house with others in the area. Make your home seem as if it has already been looted. Doing this would likely keep the low ambition looters from seeing your house as a target. Though this is probably not going to work with your neighbors. Normal looters wouldn’t know that you’ve made your house up to look looted. But your neighbor might, and you don’t need them working against you.
It’s best to be on good terms with your neighbors, but don’t let them know you have supplies. They can still turn against you out of desperation, possibly informing looters of your stash. After things have calmed down, maybe go over and check on them to see if they need anything. It is essential you do this early on after a disaster, as it will raise much less suspicion and may even give you both a leg up if you find that you can combine resources. If you wait an extended amount of time to help them, they will begin to wonder how you still have supplies and may start feeling a sense of desperation themselves by then.
If you feel you can trust neighbors, you can always invite them into your survival group, even if they have nothing to offer other than labor. More hands make less work, and it adds to your group’s size and intimidation factor.
When SHTF, there is going to be a point in time where just about every member of your survival group will be stressed. Tempers will become escalated, and arguments are likely to break out. You need to, as a leader, do your best to keep everyone level-headed and calm. If you’ve been friends or a team for a long time, you’ll do better than a newly formed team. Every member needs to contribute to the team as a whole; there’s no room for selfishness.
You can’t afford someone not doing their task because they’re upset with someone else in the group. Everyone will have to make sacrifices in the name of the team. Communication skills and even negotiating skills will play a large factor in keeping your team together. United we stand, divided we fall.
This is the survival team many preppers have, and the last thing you want is conflict within your family. Remember every person in your family needs to know the plan you have for survival. If you didn’t tell them before disaster struck, you need to sit them down ASAP. Though, it would be better to let them know ahead of time, this will make the transition much smoother, and help avoid conflict.
Whether you had a family plan or not, your family will be looking to you for answers. Questions will be asked you may not have answers for, leading to frustration. You have to stay level-headed. Your family will likely question every decision you make, and you’ll need to explain to them why you made it, and why it’s the best option. Your goal is to keep them safe for as long as possible.
Other Survivors and Groups
If you and your group make it through the disaster, you’ll eventually encounter other survivors. Hopefully, these people will become your friends, or maybe trade regularly with you. Remember, every person or group has gone through their own tragedy; try to be considerate. Granted precautions need to be taken, but in the end you should do your best to help them mutually. Strangers can become friends, even enemies can set aside their differences, people will do anything to survive. Perhaps avoiding conflict is the most ideal because the less conflict you face, the more likely you are to survive.
Basic Conflict Avoidance Methods
With all of these elements combined, there is going to come a time when conflicts arise. Use some of the techniques below to de-escalate them and deal with the main issue directly.
- Eliminate an audience. Some people are fueled by having an audience, and some of their focus will be on saving face rather than on the actual issue. Either ask everyone else to leave the area, or convince the person in question to talk to you alone.
- Provide opportunities for relief. If, even in a limited sense, unwanted changes are thrust upon people, there is a lot of emotional baggage that comes with them. This baggage needs to be processed, and the more there is, the more processing required. This can be done through sit-downs where people can present their concerns to the group, and can even be addressed with fun activities that allow for some of the more positive sides of the changes to come through. For instance, if the whole family is stuck at home after dealing with individual hectic schedules for years, take it as an opportunity to spend some fun time together for once.
- Remove individual focus. Sometimes, things like a drop box for concerns can help. The idea is to take one concern out of the box at a time and address it as a group. This way, it isn’t about the individual presenting it, but the concern itself.
- Focus on the issue. With so many elements involved, it’s easy to get sidetracked by personalities and emotions. Make it a point to keep the issue itself in the forefront of the conversation. Identify the problem, then look for solutions.
By taking a few steps that allow people to vent, be acknowledged and participate in the process in general, you can avoid conflict before it even starts.
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